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Gary Randolph Ocheltree

October 23, 1936 January 5, 2021
Gary  Randolph  Ocheltree
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Obituary for Gary Randolph Ocheltree

Gary Randolph Ocheltree, 84, passed away peacefully at home with his wife, Karen, by his side, January 5, 2021 after a six-month battle with cancer.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Melvin and Ester Ocheltree, mother of his children, Collette Glabb Ocheltree, beloved granddaughter Cortney Ann Keene, brothers, Don, Jim, and Dennis.

He was a much-loved husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend. Many labels describer Gary; artist, adventurer, back road kind of guy, shortcut guru, car lover (he had 39 cars over his lifetime and five motorcycles), fun loving, sweet, heart of gold, hot dice risk taker, toy maker, creator of two walking sticks, always ready for a road trip, Two Tuesday coffee gang member, Dirty Marbles board maker, helpful, great friend and listener, the Bubble Man, proud Central Valley high School graduate, EWU fan to the core, loved British comedy and Andy Griffith shows, loved going to lunch, and didn’t have a clue what long pants were – he always wore shorts!

He loved to camp and always did the Frosty Frog first thing in the morning. He was dad to all kids in the neighborhood that didn’t have one. He was a great teacher. He loved spending time with his kids and grandkids, and they with him, sharing his knowledge about paint, wood, furniture and of course, collecting. There never was any doubt that he was the REAL Santa, spending 19 years in that role for friends, neighbors, and family. After completing the journeyman training course for painters, he worked for a painting contractor. In 1963. He was hired as a painter at EWU where he spent 29 years. Everyone knew Gary because he was such a people person. He also served in the CASA program in support of abused and neglected children. He was a student of sculptress Sister Paula Turnbull, he helped her with many commissions, and he and his wife delivered 15 commissioned pieces.

He is survived by his wife of 35 years Karen “KB” Ocheltree; his sister Marlene Gailey (Vince); his son Randy Ocheltree (Debbie), granddaughter Amanda (Chad) Murphy, great grandchildren Ryker and Beckam, granddaughter Sarah Ocheltree; his daughter Tamara (Barry) Keene, grandson Brandon (Katherine) Keene; son Marty (Penny) Ocheltree, grandchildren Dylan and Sophia; son Gary J Ocheltree, granddaughter Nicolette Ocheltree, granddaughter Becky Ocheltree, great grandchildren Landon and Lucy, grandson Tyson (Chelsea) Ocheltree, granddaughter Heather Ocheltree (James), great grandchildren Annabella and AJ; son Craig Ocheltree, granddaughter Brittney (Kyle) Holmes, great grandchildren Jachius and Addy; daughter Kerry Ann Finn, grandson Deric (Jenna) Molner, great grandchildren Brock, Lottie, McCoy, Kash and Boyd; granddaughter Keely (Kyle) Payne, granddaughter Serenity.

There will be a private internment. A celebration of Gary’s life will be held when we can gather safely. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Hospice of Spokane. The family wishes to thank Hospice of Spokane for the amazing care and support they provided. Truly angels exist on earth in the form of the nurses and social workers that cared for Gary.

To plant a tree in memory of Gary Randolph Ocheltree, visit the Tribute Store.

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